The Honors Program - page 6-7

Emily Stefano
Mechanical Engineering
THIRDYEAR — Science: Problems and Possibilities
The Science Seminar focuses on the process of scientific research. Students work
in teams to develop NSF or NIH quality project proposals with the help of faculty
mentors. The Honors Thesis Project follows the Science Seminar. Students develop
a proposal for their project and identify a faculty mentor who guides them from the
problem definition to the completion of the thesis in the senior year.
Students in the Science Seminar develop and present proposals for scientific
research to national funding agencies. In fall 2012, student proposals addressed
problems involving coupled natural and human systems, and included “The
Effects of the Development of Super-Centers on Plastic Deposition and Leachate
Composition in Landfills,” “Determining the Link Between Environmental Stress
and Environmental Sensitivity and Awareness,” “The Local and Regional Effects
of Parabolic Trough Solar Farms on the Water Table: A Case Study of the Kramer
Junction SEGS in the Mojave Desert,” and “Modeling Potential Oil Spills Along the
Santa Barbara Coastline for Environmental Risk Analysis.”
FOURTHYEAR — Research and Modernity
The Senior Thesis Project invites the student to explore a topic in-depth in
consultation with a faculty advisor. In the Capstone Seminar, students work
in teams to explore different ways of knowing and problem-solving in diverse
disciplinary fields at Clarkson.
Sydney Laramie ’13
Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
Bridge and O’Beirne Presidential Achievement
Award Endowed Fund; Egon Matijevic´ Endowed Fund
REU at University of Wyoming; Research and
Development Intern at GE Global Research
President, ChemE Car SPEED Team; Secretary,
Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society; Undergraduate
Teaching Assistant, Materials Balances
Co-Chair, Service Committee, Honors Program
Honors Thesis Project:
Core/Shell Cu/Ag Particles and
Flakes for Electronic Applications
Faculty Mentor:
Dan Goia
Current Position:
Working toward a Ph.D. in chemical engineering at
the University of Michigan
Extreme Design
When it came to choosing an Honors thesis, I
wanted to focus on something that has been
my passion for years — skateboarding.
Working with the designers of MegaRamp,
skateboarding’s most challenging structure, my
goal was to make the ramp safer and bigger.
I traveled to California to watch pros
ride the MegaRamp and collect my data.
Back in the lab I calculated equations to
make a safer ramp for extreme sports athletes
in the future. It’s the best of both worlds —
learning about mathematics, physics and
engineering while helping a sport I love.
— Emily Stefano, Honors Program
Mechanical Engineering
Revving UP
I had two summer rotations
within GE Aviation in Lynn,
Mass. First, I was in Lynn
Assembly, Test and Overhaul
(LATO) investigating
assembly problems and test
failure in the T700 engine,
which is used in Blackhawk and Apache
helicopters. Then, I worked in Military Systems
Operations on project support and new
proposal cost analysis for the F414 engine
which is used in the Navy’s F18 Super Hornet.
I compiled a database of spare parts orders
to provide more accurate price estimates
for new contract negotiations. I also worked
with an engineering design team to reduce
incidents of F14 fuel leaks and welding
issues. In summer 2013, I started in GE’s
Edison Engineering Development Program, a
three-year rotational leadership program.
— Cassandra Miller, Honors Program
Aeronautical & Mechanical Engineering
Honors courses take professors and students alike into new territory.
The Honors curriculum comprises an integrated, four-year progression in
which you’ll gain the skills needed to tackle emerging problems in science,
technology and society.
A Unique Progression of Courses
FIRSTYEAR — Research and Society
In the first semester, students explore the role of research in society,
particularly the social consequences of new knowledge and technological
innovations that have resulted from modern science. In the second semester,
they work in teams on projects that investigate particular ethical issues
related to emerging scientific fields, such as stem cell research, biometrics
and unmanned aerial surveillance. Students develop the ability to think
critically, write persuasively and speak eloquently on a contemporary scientific
SECONDYEAR — The Sophomore Project
This is a year-long project focusing on a community problem requiring
students to develop creative solutions in multidisciplinary teams for clients
and/or multiple stakeholders under the guidance of faculty instructors and
consultants. Recent examples include a feasibility study for a residential
facility for a local hospice service provider and the development of web-based
interactive exhibits for the Adirondack Museum.
Designing sustainable facilities to improve
residential care
In 2012, Honors sophomores were asked by the directors of Hospice and
Palliative Care of St. Lawrence Valley to investigate the possibility of building
a residential facility on their campus in Potsdam. Students worked in teams
to identify the market, conducting interviews with service providers and
surveying members of the community; to determine financial costs and
benefits by examining financial data and the complex regulations regarding
reimbursement by government agencies; and to propose designs for the
building by reviewing best practices for in-patient care and environmentally
sustainable engineering. Teams consulted regularly with the client and
presented the Board of Trustees with a thorough report on the anticipated
costs and potential benefit of this enterprise.
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